The World Health Organisation (WHO) Independent High-Level Commission on NCDs’ new report, Time to Deliver, called for urgent action against chronic diseases and mental disorders, the globe’s leading cause of death and ill-health, but failed to include a recommendation on taxing sugary beverages.
Now that government’s strategy to reduce the sugar intake through the introduction of a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages – known as a Health Promotion Levy – consumers in general remain cynical, believing it may not have the desired impact.
There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the sugar tax which was officially implemented on April 1. The tax, equivalent to a levy of about 11 percent on can of coke, is aimed at tackling South Africa’s obesity epidemic and the diseases associated with it. Health-e News busted five common myths.
South Africa is less than two weeks away from implementing the hard-won tax on sugary drinks. Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said now that “we’ve got a foot in the door” he will strengthen the government’s fight against the negative health impacts of sugar by pushing for a higher tax.
Debates are in full swing about the proposed sugar tax that is likely to start in South Africa in early 2018. As Orbis Africa explains, this is part of a broader government plan to tackle non-communicable diseases over the next five years.
Severely mentally ill patients are more likely to suffer from diabetes, be obese and have a higher risk of dying young than the general population. Research is increasingly linking diet to mental health. And, reports Amy Green for HEALTH-E NEWS on the eve of World Diabetes Day, sugar is a potent but much-over-looked culprit.
For the first time in world history, there are more obese than underweight people. Both are symptoms of malnutrition, part of a global food system geared towards profits. Activists want a radical shift in the entire food system, including a total ban on junk food advertising. Is it possible and will it make a difference?
The proposed tax on sugary drinks is likely to go ahead later this year, following negotiations between government, labour and industry at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).